Tuesday 17 April 16:20 - 16:50 Armitage Room
The Open Education Evidence Hub: a collective intelligence tool for evidence based policy
Anna De Liddo, Simon Buckingham Shum, Patrick McAndrew & Rob Farrow, The Open University, UK
Conference Theme: Innovation
Summary: This paper presents the Evidence Hub, a tool to enable knowledge sharing and evidence-based Policy in Open Education.
Abstract: This paper presents a Collective Intelligence tool, called the Evidence Hub, to enable evidence-based Policy in Open Education. This infrastructure provides the OER community with a space to harvest the evidence of OER effectiveness and at the same time provides policy makers with a community-generated knowledge base to make evidence based decision on Educational Policy.
Our goal is to co-design the people, processes and platforms to support and enable more effective CI for the OER movement, building on the mechanisms already in place by which we share insights and experiences, but adding a layer to structure and index that knowledge sharing so that it is not locked in minds or documents. An important lesson from the learning sciences, and especially in Open and Distance Learning, is that sensemaking, and learning, occur through discourse: the sharing and critiquing of ideas in ways that both affirm and challenge, central to which is the presence of potentially conflicting viewpoints. Our approach to CI therefore focuses on scaffolding interpretive discourse and on alerting users to when there are both agreements and differences in opinion. Therefore collective Intelligence for OER sustainability starts with capturing the hidden knowledge of the OER movement and leveraging it so that can be re-used and put in value. We build on the stance that this knowledge is usually hidden in the minds and thinking of OER users (learners and teachers), advocates, practitioners and funders, or it is distributed in many virtual or physical “places” and therefore impossible to be retrieved. We therefore need better ways to either capture people’s thinking and connect and scaffold it to develop the Collective Intelligence of the OER movement. CI would therefore shape the infrastructure to support the OER movement to be tackle the many challenges it faces.
In this paper we present the initial results of how the previous concepts have been articulated and developed into the Evidence Hub, a prototype tool to map the learners, researchers and practitioners’ thinking, knowledge and evidence of OER effectiveness and make those visible and debatable, thus building what we defined Contested Collective Intelligence (De Liddo & Buckingham Shum 2010, De Liddo & al 2011) around OERs. In particular the Evidence Hub for Open Education aims to provide an environment to systematically interrogate the Open Education movement on what are the people, projects, organizations, key challenges, issues, solutions, claims and evidence that scaffold the movement. The Site is a space to collaboratively build an evidence hub that represents and maps the collective knowledge of the Open Education community. In section two we describe the main features of the Evidence Hub, and explain how it contributes to the development of Collective Intelligence for evidence based Policy. Moreover in section three we present a real examples of how the Evidence Hub has been used to distil Collective Intelligence of a real OER community: the OER advocacy group. Finally in section four, we discuss preliminary results and future research directions.